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International Journal of Poultry Science
Year: 2004  |  Volume: 3  |  Issue: 7  |  Page No.: 432 - 437

Spread of Campylobacter spp. During Poultry Processing in Different Seasons

A. Hinton, Jr., J.A. Cason, M.E. Hume and K.D. Ingram    

Abstract: The presence of Campylobacter spp. on broiler carcasses and in scald tank water in a commercial poultry processing facility was monitored at monthly intervals from July through December. The spread of the pathogen had previously been monitored in the same facility from January through June of the same year. Campylobacter were enumerated on prescalded, picked, eviscerated, and chilled broiler carcasses; on processed carcasses stored at 4°C for 7 or 14 days, and in scald tank water samples. The fatty acid methyl ester (FAME) profile of the Campylobacter isolates and the degree of relatedness between the Campylobacter isolates was determined using the MIDI Sherlock Microbial Identification System (MIS). Findings indicated that Campylobacter jejuni was present on carcasses and in scald tank water samples collected from July through December. Processing significantly (P < 0.05) decreased the number of Campylobacter recovered from broiler carcasses, however. Furthermore, significantly (P < 0.05) fewer C. jejuni were consistently recovered from the third tank of the multiple tank scald system than from the first tank. Findings indicated that poultry flocks may introduce several strains of C. jejuni into processing facilities. Additionally, different populations of the pathogen may be carried into the processing plant by successive broiler flocks, and some strains of C. jejuni may reappear in the same processing facility during different times of the year.

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